In the Wake of Disaster, No Village Is Too Remote

After two earthquakes devastated Nepal this spring, Dunnbahabur, a mason, could only look at the ruins of Bhumlichowk, his village in the Himalayan foothills, and wonder, “Why did every house crumble?”


All 20 homes in his neighborhood were destroyed. Hundreds of families throughout the village were affected. And because Bhumlichowk is so remote, Dunnbahabur, his wife, and four children had to wait over a week for disaster aid to arrive. Fortunately, Federation partner the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) was tirelessly working to reach them.


Overcoming Obstacles


Partnering with local agencies on the ground, JDC brought 500 tarps to protect Bhumlichowk’s newly homeless from both sun and heavy monsoon rains. They also delivered lifesaving essentials like 1,000 kilos of rice and other food supplies, and 500 hygiene kits.


Transporting supplies through the mountains is grueling work. According to Sam Amiel, a senior member of JDC’s Nepal response team, “Some locations are so remote we’ve had to manually carry goods over narrow suspended bridges straddling deep gorges.”


But he believes there is no doubt that it is worth the effort. “Delivering badly needed goods to survivors of the quake is not just critical to their survival; it’s a mitzvah, a good deed,” Sam says.


Always There


The future remains uncertain for Dunnbahabur, his family, and the rest of his tiny village. Full recovery will come slowly. It’ll take months—years, even.


But they have enough for right now. And JDC is committed to providing long-term aid to ensure that they, and the rest of Nepal, can get back on their feet. 


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